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The flight path of suspicious Iranian cargo plane leaving demascus just before airstrikes on December 25, 2018.(Photo by: screenshot)
Suspicious Iranian cargo plane left Damascus minutes before airstrike
By SETH J. FRANTZMAN
12/26/2018
According to the site Flightradar24.com, the Boeing 747-281F left Damascus and flew due east towards Tehran, climbing to 30,000 feet and then crossing into Iraq after ten in the evening.
Two suspicious Iranian planes left Damascus on Tuesday night just prior to reports of airstrikes.

Details from flight monitoring sites show that a Fars Air Qeshm 747 cargo plane left Damascus International Airport at 9:28 p.m. on Tuesday, just half an hour before reports emerged of air strikes in Syria.

According to the site Flightradar24.com, the Boeing 747-281F left Damascus and flew due east towards Tehran, climbing to 10,000 meters and crossing into Iraq after 10 p.m.

By midnight, it had entered Iranian airspace and began a beeline for Tehran. A second Tehran bound flight, Maham Air took off at 10:04 p.m. and flew precisely the same route. The Far Air Qeshm flight has been in the news in the past in relation to alleged smuggling of arms to Syria. Al-Arabiya claimed that it transferred weapons to Hezbollah in early December. In October, Fox News carried a similar report.

Similarly, Mahan Air has been targeted by the US Treasury Department for links to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, making its departure right after the Fars Air Qeshm suspicious. Although the Fars flight appears to have left before the airstrikes began, the Mahan Air flight seems to have left around the same time.

In the past, reports have indicated that airstrikes targeted Damascus after suspicious flights landed and allegedly disembarked cargo for arms smuggling to Hezbollah factions.
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